Chicago Fire Cool the New York Red Bulls 3-1

Chicago Fire fans can breathe a sigh of relief. The “Men in Red” finally got into the win column today. It took two late goals from an unlikely hero to defeat the New York Red Bulls 3-1 in front of over 12,000 fans at Toyota Park.Brazilian forward Maicon Santos put the Fire ahead in the 83rd minute of play with a brilliant move that left Red Bulls goalkeeper Luis Robles out of position.Santos followed his go-ahead goal with a header for an insurance score near the 90th-minute mark.The match began as a seesaw event that featured good passing and solid defense.Both teams swapped possessions during the first 15 minutes of play. Neither the Fire nor the Red Bulls were able to take advantage of several scoring chances.The Fire had a great chance at drawing the first blood when they had a corner kick opportunity within the second minute, but Chris Rolfe lofted a soft shot that went into Robles' arms.Later in the first half the Red Bulls took a 1-0 lead with a goal. The bicycle kick by defender Jamison Olave caught the attention of the fans, and Fire goalkeeper Sean Johnson never had a chance to make the save.The ...
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Chris Rolfe Leads Chicago Fire to a Comeback Win Versus the Columbus Crew

The Chicago Fire can win the MLS Cup! That was my proclamation after witnessing their come-from-behind victory against the Columbus Crew Saturday night. Over 19,000 fans jammed Toyota Park and watched Fire goalkeeper Sean Johnson give a goal away on an errant pass. But there was no doubt that they would come back and win the game. The ill-timed pass Johnson intended for defender Arne Friedrich went instead to an awaiting Jairo Arrieta, who caught Johnson out of position to score the goal in the 15th minute of play. Instead of sulking, the Fire raised their intensity level and went on the attack offensively. Fire forward and Kettering, Ohio native Chris Rolfe tied the match in the 23rd minute of play. Sharp passing by Sherjill MacDonald set up Rolfe’s goal beautifully. As the crowd roared, Rolfe proved he was not finished, adding a go-ahead goal three minutes later. The goal ended up the game winner. Fire coach Frank Klopas praised the effort of the team following the match in his post-game press conference: “Yeah, obviously another great win for our team. Being here at home there is a fantastic atmosphere tonight from our fans. And I thought we had a very good start to the game. We made ...
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5 Things the Chicago Fire Can Do to Win the MLS Cup

Chicago Fire fans must be excited about the Fire’s chances at earning a spot in the MLS playoffs. Having gone 7-2-1 in their last 10 games, the Fire have the look of a championship contender. Overall, the Fire have a record of 15-8-5 with 50 points. They are peaking at just the opportune time. After their 3-1 win against the Montreal Impact, Fire forward Patrick Nyarko spoke to reporters about the team’s goals at the beginning of the season. When asked about how many points he and his fellow Fire teammates were shooting for, Nyarko responded with “60 points.” The Fire currently have 53 points.  With five games remaining, after defeating the Columbus Crew 2-1 this past Saturday, 60 points is well within reach. So is winning the MLS Cup. Here are five things the Fire can do in order to finish the season as MLS Cup champions. This does not include defeating the Eastern Conference-leading Sporting Kansas City club next Friday.    Begin Slideshow
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Patrick Nyarko’s Quick Goal Helps Chicago Fire Race Past Houston Dynamo 3-1

The Chicago Fire and their coach, Frank Klopas, came into Sunday night’s game needing a win. Less than one minute into the game, they were well on their way. A Patrick Nyarko goal off a Dynamo turnover got the fans happy barely after the opening kick. The Fire’s second-fastest goal (47 seconds) in team history was just the beginning of what they had in store for the Houston Dynamo in their 3-1 win. An excited Toyota Park crowd of 17,007 watched one of the Fire’s most aggressively played games to date. If Nyarko’s goal struck a match, a following goal by Daniel Paladini in the 19th minute of play ignited the flame. Paladini used a deke to get Dynamo goalkeeper Tally Hall out of position for the score. The goal was set up with a crisp pass from the active, though unlucky, Alvarez Fernandez to put the Fire ahead 2-0. The Fire never looked back. During the first half, the Fire attacked on every possession; their passes were effective and they showed patience to set up for additional scoring opportunities. One of those opportunities came when Fernandez received a well-placed pass from forward Sherjill MacDonald. The midfielder proceeded to set ...
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How the Chicago Fire Came Back to Stun Toronto FC 2-1

Resilient is the best way to describe the Chicago Fire this season. There was no better term to use for the Fire’s 2-1 win over Toronto FC than resilient. With the win, the Fire improved to 10-7-5 and 35 points with a stellar 7-2-2 home record. The Fire could have packed it in once they went down 0-1 midway in the first half when some miscommunication on a pass ended up a turnover. TFC’s forward Ryan Johnson was at the right place at the right time intercepting a Marco Pappa pass meant for Austin Berry. Both Pappa and Berry would later make up for the gaffe when they scored on the tying and game-winning goals. On the first Fire goal, Pappa used some nifty footwork to capitalize on a TFC miscue. On the shot, Pappa drew the TFC defenders with a hesitation play with his feet to knock in the left-footed goal. Berry was in good position for a beautiful header in the second goal, in the 85th minute that proved to be the game-winner. Before those two goals, TFC’s goalkeeper Milos Kocic had a marvelous match denying the Fire on seven shots on goal. The match was a physical ...
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Aston Villa Douses the Chicago Fire 1-0

Chicago Fire fans got a glimpse of players that they seldom get to see play against Aston Villa. In the international friendly, reserves such as Corben Bone, Rafael Robayo and Orr Barouch received some much-needed playing time. They started alongside, among others, Marco Pappa and Alex, the newcomer from Brazil. Jay Nolly also started for the Fire as the goalkeeper. It was his first game since tearing his Achilles. For Alex, this game should prove to be beneficial as he is still getting acclimated to his Fire teammates. For the rest of the reserves, they received an in-game experience that may prove vital in case an injury strikes the team going forward. After the game, Fire coach Frank Klopas acknowledged the obvious about his unusual first 11. “It was an opportunity for some guys to continue to have some rhythm. Since we don’t have a league this week, obviously an opportunity for some other players to get 45 minutes, 60 minutes in and make sure that they are in a position where they’re ready to help out in case we need them. So, I’m happy with the effort of players and we walk away luckily, with no injuries. Certain guys got 45 minutes, certain guys were ...
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Chicago Fire Versus Aston Villa First Half Game Notes

Chicago Fire fans got a glimpse of players that they seldom get to see play against Aston Villa. In the international friendly, reserves such as Corben Bone, Rafael Robayo and Orr Barouch received some much-needed playing time. They started alongside, among others, Marco Pappa and Alex, the newcomer from Brazil.Jay Nolly also started for the Fire as the goalkeeper. It was his first game since tearing his Achilles.For Alex, this game should prove to be beneficial as he is still getting acclimated to his Fire teammates. For the rest of the reserves, they receive in-game experience that may prove vital in case of an injury strikes the team going forward.Thus far the Fire has looked slightly tentative against their foes from the English Premier League. While the Fire's passing has been sharp, they seldom had chances to attack. Their defense has also appeared sluggish as they get a feel for Aston Villa's offensive attack.Aston Villa struck first in the 28th minute of play with a goal by Gabriel Agbonlahor and took their 1-0 lead into halftime. Ernest Shepard is an analyst for the Bleacher Report. All observations were obtained firsthand.  Read more MLS news on
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A Few Minutes With… the Chicago Fire’s Patrick Nyarko

After the Chicago Fire’s 1-0 win versus the Vancouver Whitecaps Saturday night, I was able to catch up with the Fire’s Patrick Nyarko. During my conversation with the fourth-year forward from Ghana, we touched on a couple of topics. We discussed the team’s ongoing Twitter campaign, #pickpat, to have him placed on the MLS All-Star team and how his selection would help the team and his confidence. Also, I asked him about the Fire’s upcoming match with the New York Red Bulls this week.  (Upon the release of this interview, Nyarko was not selected to the MLS All-Star team.)  B/R: What are your feelings regarding the team’s twitter campaign #pickpat? Patrick Nyarko: It came as a surprise really. Generally, I think those that pick the team, they do that on merit. They take guys that they think merits the all-star team. My team thinks that I should be there. I believe in my abilities, I think that I can fit in those kind of games, play in those kind of big games. It’s all up to them, I’ll be perfectly fine if get picked. I’ll be perfectly fine if I don’t get picked. My main goal is to help this ...
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Chicago Fire Tackle the Vancouver Whitecaps 1-0

A goal scored on a free kick by Pavel Pardo helped the Chicago Fire tackle the Vancouver Whitecaps 1-0 in a physical matchup.The game featured a lot of pushing, shoving and jersey holding. Several players received yellow cards, including Gonzalo Segares, Alex and Arne Friedrich (two) for the Fire, and Darren Mattocks for the Whitecaps. Friedrich was ejected after his second yellow card in the 69th minute when he and defender Austin Berry collided with Mattocks on a breakaway play. The game also had its share of good passing, defense and some terrific saves by Sean Johnson. On the last save of the match in the 86th minute, Johnson swatted a goal attempt out of bounds. It led to some rarely seen emotion from the Fire players. It was a symbolic save in a sense, a save that could send a message to the rest of the league that this team is for real. The Fire did a great job defensively on Mattocks, who earlier in the week scored two goals against Toronto FC. The second of those goals was a header that became an instant classic.Friedrich was given the task of shadowing the tough matchup with Mattocks and was ...
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Chicago Fire 0-2 LA Galaxy: Fire Gets Rubbed out as Robbie Keane Strikes

Skittish would be a good way to describe the Chicago Fire’s 2-0 loss to the LA Galaxy on Sunday.Logan Pause and the Fire had no movement on the field in front of a sellout Toyota Park crowd.The Fire is trying to figure out how to work recently acquired Brazilian midfielder Alex into the lineup. They are also coping with the absence of midfielder Sebastian Grazzini, who left the team more than a week ago to tend to a personal matter.However, neither situation should serve as an excuse for the Fire, who simply did not take advantage of some good scoring chances.In the 55th minute, striker Dominic Oduro's attempt on goal went straight into the arms of Galaxy keeper Josh Saunders. It was a play that summed up the match. The Fire never had a better opportunity, despite turning up their desperation.After the match, Fire head coach Frank Klopas downplayed the defeat, describing it as just “one game.”Meanwhile, former United States head coach and current coach of the Galaxy Bruce Arena praised the “good effort” of his team.The Galaxy played without David Beckham due to a league suspension. Landon Donovan was supposed to be held out of the game, but the ...
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